Ancient Treasures-Day 14-Murder in Skara

December 05, 2014 By: Tamais Category: Lake Austin News

lake austin shard

Governor Rowan looked angrily at Captain Guy after reading his report. “How could another murder happen again. Where were you,” She raged. He stepped back out of striking range. ” Governor, we were guarding the shores and ferry crossing as ordered. My ranks have shrunk. Some rangers are gathering meat for winter.”

“That is no excuse. Call back the rangers from hunting. These assaults and murders must be stopped ” Frowning, she stopped pacing. “If there is one more assault or murder, you will find yourself in Yew prison! Now get out of here and find the killers!” Quickly he left. Governor Rowan sat down and wrote a message to Captain Corian requesting an urgent meeting. She told him what the rangers had found. A trail of blood leading first to a scroll. A.M.E.L. I.A. had been written several times on it. Continuing to follow the trail, they found signs of a struggle, a torn dress and a scroll that said keep them in Ice.

clue bloody dress


I went with Agaris to meet with the governor. “Governor Rowan, Captain Corian sent me to assist in your investigation. ” he said bowing. “As soon as the dress had been found, I took the royal spies and guards to Ice dungeon. There we found signs that a blood ritual had been performed.”

Governor Rowan looked at him in shock, “What evidence of a blood ritual did you find.” She demanded.

“We found a sword that had been rinsed off in a bucket. A scroll mentioning Skara’s Butcher shop.  But the most disturbing, a scroll saying the her blood didn’t work so they needed another. The blood had to be from the woman taken from Skara.

ice note 2

Governor Rowan looked at notes that she had been given. “I read that items bearing the crest of the Humming Bird, Fox on the Riven and Komodo Dragon were found. Have you found the connection to these Tokuno Houses?”

Agaris shook his head, “Not yet Governor, our search will continue. But our first priority is to find the murder of your citizens.” With that he bowed and left Governor Rowan to her thoughts.

 The following day Agaris and I went to the Bountiful Meats. There we found more drops of blood.

butcher shop owner

“Mistress Odette, how many apprentices do you have?”

“I don’t know why you need to know, but I have three. I just hired two of them.”

“What can you tell us about your apprentices? Have you noticed any thing strange about their behavior?”

“No, they have been excellent workers, eager to learn. They work until the shop closes, which with the goings on have made me close early,” Odette began tapping her foot, “I pay my taxes so what are you doing about the murders?”

“We are investigating a lead and soon will capture the killer. Can you tell us where your apprentices are?” asked Agaris

Scowling at Agaris, Odette demanded. “Just why do you need to see the boys. The shop has just opened, so they should be on there way here. Don’t you keep those boys, I need them here. “

“Since they close up the shop at night, I’m hoping they saw something.” Agaris replied as he left the shop. Finding the apprentices outside he called them over one at a time. Having arrived the royal guard kept the others from leaving. Agaris first questioned Eram the Apprentice Butcher.


E. the suspect


“I have just a couple of questions for you,”  Agaris began. ” The night of the murder did you leave the shop?”

“No, I was here the whole time.” Eram stopped. “Well for a moment I went to get a pie from the Baker’s”

“Are you left or right handed?” Eram, favoring his left leg, took a step back,”Why do you ask?”

Agaris, noticed how Eram favored his leg. “We are asking everyone as part of the investigation. And you are sure you went nowhere else tonight?”

“Positive, I left and then went straight home. I live right outside of Skara.”

“Thank you Eram, you can go to work now.”


 When Agaris called Denton over, he noticed the lad seem nervous.

“Hello Denton, I need to ask you a couple of questions.”

“Make them quick. I’m very busy.” Denton said trying to move toward the shop. Why are you bothering me?

We need your help in our investigation. The other night, here in Skara Brae, where were you?”

“Here until closing.” Denton replied.

“Are you sure you didn’t leave the shop until closing?”

Moving towards the shop’s door, he answered “No, I was definitely here all night.”

“So until closing, interesting. Are you left or right handed?”

Hiding his hand behind him, “Left handed why are you asking? Denton asked suspiciously.

Agaris saw that Denton’s hand was badly cut. “And you are sure you didn’t leave the shop?”

“No, I was here until the shop closed. Then I went straight home.”

“Where do you live” “Right outside Skara. Now I must get to work.” Denton quickly slipped through the door.

Frowning Agaris approached the last Apprentice

“Hello there Aldrick, may we have a moment of your time?”

suspect 2

“Yes, but I need to get to work.” Aldrick answered.

“We just need to ask you a few questions.”

“What about?” Aldrick asked curiously.”

“The other night, here in Skara Brae, where were you?” “Here working in the shop, like always.”

“The entire night, are you sure you did not leave the shop? Well for a moment, went to the Inn for some bread. I was hungry”

“I see… Are you left or right handed?” Agaris continued.

“I don’t see why it matters, I am left handed.”Aldrick looked puzzled.

“Where did you go after the shop closed?” “Right home, I live just outside of Skara, can I go to work now?” Aldrick started towards the door.

“Yes, thank you for your help.?” Agaris motioned to us to follow him. “Well it is clear that one of them is lying. I tried asking around with a few of the Guards who patrol outside of the city. He said he’s seen two of them nearby But he didn’t pay them much attention, or get a good look at them.”

Where do we go from here? I asked.

“We should probably go check the crime scene again, Evidias gave me another potion… thankfully I don’t have to drink it.” he said with a grimace. Maybe we can find out what hand the killer was using with the sword. He looked at the bottle, hoping Evidias didn’t create a potion that will blow him up… When he lead us to the dress, everyone gathered closely around to see what the potion would do.” Can we have some space around the dress please.  Now, I guess I just pour out a bit.” Agaris frowned at what he learned. “Cut by a sword, I was hoping it had been grabbed.”

drss step 1


“Wouldn’t doing it with the sword make more sense?” Lady Thaila asked.

Yes, but we need to check everything. I made us a more convenient way into Ice.” Agaris said as he opened a gate to Ice. Arriving he poured a small bit of the potion on to the sword. “Hum, a left handed sword.” “Denton and Aldrick were both left handed. Eram was right handed and had a limp. That would rule him out.

” I reminded Agairis that Denton had hidden his cut hand from us.

“True but he might have done it while cutting up meat.”

Agaris,  he could have used the sword in his left hand. That misuse could have caused him to cut himself” I pointed out.

Agaris deep in thought began frowning. “This sword doesn’t help. Someone is playing us.  Looking around Agaris found a set of tracks, “Hum…who ever made these tracks was limping.  I wonder?  All of them stayed at the shop until closing…wait, is there a baker in Skara?”

“No,” I answered. “Last time I wanted piece of cake, I had to return to Britain.”

Smiling, “We have found our killer,” Agaris opened a gate back to Skara. Now to arrest him.” We followed him as he stepped through the gate. Arriving, Agaris confronted Eram.

the killer caught

” Evening again Eram. I have come to take you to Yew Prison.” Agaris motioned for the guard to surround Eram.

“But I covered it all up so well, curse you, how did you know?” Eram demanded.

“You tried to cover your tracks. When we found the misused grip on the sword, we assumed it was Denton, who cut himself as you knew we would. But you left tracks. They were of some one limping and only you were limping.” You also said you went to the baker for pie. Skara Brae doesn’t have a baker. Tell us who hired you.” Agaris signaled the guards to cuff Eram.

“I’d rather die, besides they will send another in my place.” scowled.

“You won’t get a chance. Clearly, you were willing to let an innocent be hanged in your place.  Yew Prison will be now be your home for life.

Agaris looked at us, ” I will return shortly after I escort this prisoner to Yew. Don’t want to risk hm getting a chance to warn whoever hired him. If they don’t know he’s failed, perhaps we can replace him for now. Meet me at Britain Hall, I will join you after I report the matter to Captain Corina.” He then opened two gates, one to the Yew Prison and the other to Britain  Hall.

Ancient Treasures Day 13 Part 1.

November 18, 2014 By: Tamais Category: Lake Austin News

Lake austin shard

Knowing King Blackthorn was concerned about recent events, I meet with several of the governors learn what had been discussed at the King’s meeting . I was told that Vos had been discovered aboard a Blood Flagon ship. A woman, possible the one who broke him out of jail, was seen standing with him. It was noted that the king wasn’t surprised as Dahlia had urged that something was amuck. Trinsic’s Navy blockade had worked. No new ships had been able to enter or leave. Trapping the Blood Flagons in Buc’s Dens water and causing several pirates included the parlay group to take up residence. Captain Corian advised allowing them to remain, until the Royal Spies had some proof they were after.

The King had given the governors good news. The Royal Guard seem to be free of all spies and traitors. I thought to myself could that be because the spy was the woman who had freed Vos. All agreed the King had made a wise decision to promote Captain Corian.

Merrick has now agreed to speak to Corian and provide him with the missing information we need. However Captain Corian didn’t fully trust Merrick. He had urged caution when dealing with him. Information that could be verified by the decoded parchment Sherry Mouse had found. The parchment hinted of objects that had been placed in the vaults while Tolivar Fence had been the Royal Spymaster. When asked what the objects were, the King simply said that for now the information was being kept secret. At least until it was compared to the list Merrick was giving Captian Corian.

Asked why the information had gone unnoticed for so long. The King reminded the Governors of how trouble the rule of Casca had been. Leaving things muddled, some of the vaults were forgotten at that time. Hum I wondered, forgotten or hidden. It was suggested that the King appoint someone to take an accounting of the vaults and their contents.

Later that evening I received a message from the King. “Tomorrow evening, I want you to meet with Dahlia. I am concerned that of late, she has not reported to me.”

The next day I met Dahlia at the Royal Spies Headquarters. It was obvious that she was troubled. I listened carefully to what she was telling the gathering.  “Corian says it was likely the servant girl was the spy. He feels that Elise wouldn’t be so bold to break into Yew Prison. “I tried telling him that she had been seen leaving Buc’s Den and had just returned. I swear that the woman’s face …” She began biting her lip, clearly annoyed Corian hadn’t heard her out.  A worried look crossed her face. “Evidias sent a letter mentioning meeting Merrick, and that everything was going as planned. She claims she spoke to Merrick.  I have not been able to find Captain Corian to ask about the letter. He has said nothing of Merrick being released. Have you been informed of his release.”  Looking around I could see that spies were surprised by this news. “Surely Evidias wouldn’t help him escape.” I told Dahlia, trying to reassure her. “We will talk to her when we arrive in Jhelom. Right now we must see why there is a Blood Flagon fleet of the shores of both Skara Brae and Jhelom.”

That news brought shouts of anger. It was decided to go first to Skara Brae. Everyone was prepared for battle. The gates opened and our army stepped through. Hesitating  for a moment,  I remembering the  quick death found  last time I stepped through a gate. Arriving at Skara Brae, I was meet by citizens fleeing from the docks. I stopped one to find out what they were running from. The citizen, out of breath, demanded that I let him go. Didn’t I know that Blood Flagons had attacked the ranger’s camp. Leaving the ferry,  I moved quickly to the Ranger’s Camp following a trail of bodies. I saw that it was not Blood Flagons but instead regular brigands.

still at skara


Then I saw the pets they had brought, Sand Snakes! While I hate snakes, they seem to love me. As soon as I arrived, several began chasing me.

snakes even 10-25

Quickly I hid to watch the battle.  We fought bravely, but still many died.  Not even healers were spared.

terrible loss of healers


I couldn’t wonder, why was the battle so short. I expressed my concern to Dahlia.   Frowning, she quickly regrouped the spies and gated us to Jhelom.


Ancient Treasure-Day 12-Part 2

October 30, 2014 By: Tamais Category: Lake Austin News

lake austin shard

Thinking that a ship might have landed on the coast, we left to search. Outside we found Dahlia waiting.  Seeing that she was calm, I knew that she had not heard the news. When I told her about Vos and what he said, “treasure being worth more than gold.”  She became angry. “That is the type of humor I’d expect from a pirate.  No matter, did you get a description of the lady?”  Looking at my notes, I tried to decide what part of the description would help us the most. My lady, the lady in question, was fair and had a slight limp in the right leg. The innkeeper did say she did not have golden hair.” It could be Elise. We know she has used disguise in the past.” Lady Dahila frowned as she thought about what we knew of the lady.

“Is there any thing else I should know? Agaris mentioned a man named Tarian in passing.”   Quickly I told her of the orc attack and how they targeted Tarian before us.

battle at roads


Since it seemed that Tolivar had told Tarian not to stop for us, I pointed out that Tolivar was probably who hired the orcs. Dahlia shook her head as she thought about what I had just told her. “You and the King will not like my thoughts about this. I do hope I am wrong, but I think Elise has lead us on a merry chase.”   Dahlia continued, ” I think Captain Elise, tricked some of her own Pirates into attacking her…I think she did it on purpose, so that we would hold the parlay. I don’t think her own pirates know what she looks like. It seems she has been pushing us to kill Tolivar Fence. She is also willing to kill her own men. No wonder she is feared by the pirates.”


a new pirate


Hum… “Did Merrick say anything would help?” I asked. “He was finally willing to talk, but he wouldn’t say too much. He eventually told me that he wasn’t longer sure there was an Ancient treasure. Instead he was beginning to think is was a trap. He began rambling about the time he was serving on Whitebeard’s ship. There he had meet a beautiful but sad young woman. He asked her to run away with her, but she told him that she was trapped and  only so often able to escape.”

Thinking to myself,  ah, that would explain much if she was the treasure and that Merrick was in love with her. I turned my attention back to Dahlia. She told us that Whitebeard had grown tired of looking for the treasure deciding it was only a myth. Not long after, Merrick met Tolivar. After he found a coin that seem magical Tolivar began to believe him. It seemed he had told her that the many locations we had been to weren’t parts of the treasure, but instead of the original spell.

That caught my attention. A spell, had it been casted by the same person who had cast the ritual at the Brit crossroad. I would have to speak to the King’s Mages to see what they might know. They should know if another door had been opened to another dimension. Wrinkling my head in thought, I remembered the door we could not open. It might be a good time to revisit it. I couldn’t help but thing Merrick was behind the trouble. Tolivar must have something he needs. And Merrick is willing to bury him, if he doesn’t give it to him.




When I began to listen to Dahlia again.  I heard that the conversation had turned to the connection between Tolivar and Elise. She was telling us that it was very possible that Elise was Tolivar’s granddaughter. I thought back to the story that Merrick had told us. About the man he knew once, who died, or likely “almost” died. And then the noble woman who was killed, and the girl who was lost, and the girl’s father drinking himself to death. While Merrick didn’t confirm it, it was the first time he flinched. We had shoved her towards danger. That would explain why Tolivar thought of us as enemies. Tolivar is pretty much willing to kill any of us, to protect Elise… But why would he just not stop her.    Dahlia frowned while thinking. ” I think he tried kidnapping her and failed. It’s likely where this whole, “Threat on her life” originated.   I thought that would explain the books we found yesterday.

book 1

As usual, Merrick knows more about Tolivar than he is letting on. There is something else though, that Merrick isn’t saying. That much of it we agree on . I have no idea what it is though.  Merrick is… *sighs* Merrick is Merrick. He’s willing to burn Tolivar’s whole world down, to keep us out of  the crossfire.

When the conversation turned to Dahlia’s family, I tied to connect the information about Elias to the treasure. I saw that Merrick and Tolivar’s relationship had changed. Was Merrick using Elias to force Tolivar’s hand. Merrick had become obsessed  with the Treasure. If it was indeed a woman he loved, that would explain it. We were running out of clues. I hoped that the scrap of paper Sherry had found, would be the other clues.

Others had the same thought and asked about the paper. Dahlia gladly informed us that half of it had been decoded. Our ideas about the colors had been correct. However the mages and scribes were still trying to find the color needed for the second half. They knew it was something in the purple spectrum. She began laughing thinking of the workshop. I saw the workshop, they’ve somehow churned out three hundred and twelve didn’t hues… It’s… frightening. When the light comes in the window, it’s like you’re standing in this strange world.

I suggested that the gems we found, might be the colors we need. But I was reminded that we hadn’t found a red gem yet. Dahlia suggested that I review my notes and see what colors the Vesper jeweler had made. Whoever designed it, would have made a good spy.  We’ve been making a lot of glass…






Tired, Dahlia started to leave. Stopping she asked me to take a message to Governor Rowan. We’ve got a lead, another Skara citizen was killed. The only clue was the sword that had been found. She was hoping that perhaps the governor would be able to identify the owner. I assured her that I would take both the message and the sword immediately  to her.

“Now I must go talk to Evidias. She might know what Merrick is not telling us. I’ll also see what she thinks about the door. Sighing, she turned and left. I looked carefully at the sword. It was finely crafted. Hopefully Governor Rowan would recognize it. Only one way to find out and I casted a gate to Skara Brae.



strange door

Ancient Treasures Day 12 Part 1

October 30, 2014 By: Tamais Category: Lake Austin News

Lake Austin Shard

Having overslept, I hurried to met with Agaris. When I arrived at the meeting hall all I found a message and a moongate. “Step through the gate to meet with Tolivar.” Vos Stepping through the gate, I found myself in Orc valley. Immediately I was on the run for my life. Foolishly I sought safety in the cave. Death came quickly.  Finding a healer, I returned to the battle.


battle orc valley


Before long it was over and Agaris gated us back to the hall. “Well that was quite a greeting and no sign of Tolivar. ” he said frowning. “Could we have been to late.” Thinking to myself could Vos been lying. It wouldn’t be the first time he lead us astray. Perhaps Agaris was right and we had arrived to late. Turning my attention back to what he was saying, I heard him direct us to find a mage by the name of Tarian Lokweaver. He was suppose to be in Minoc. When we found him we where to detain him until Agaris could rejoin us. Agaris then stepped back through his gate to Orc Valley. He hoped he would find a clue to Tolivar’s hidding place.

a battle


Arriving in Minoc, the party divided up to find Tarian. He was no where to be found. Lord Neptune called to us.  He had started toward the gypsy camp. On the way he had found Tarian Lockweaver. Looking around at our party, Tarian demanded to be released. When that didn’t work he tried to buy us with gold.



Finding that we were determined to take him to Argaris, he looked around slyly and began to laugh. Turning we saw a band of orcs running towards us.

blood flogons again


To his and our surprised, at first they ignored us and attacked Tarian. Joining the battle to save him was to no avail. Lying on the ground, his dying words, “Tolivar, I didn’t tell.” When Agaris arrived, I explained what had happened. He too was puzzled by who had hired the orcs. From what Merrick told him, Tolivar was loyal to those who worked with him. So if the orcs had not been hired by Tolivar, who had.

aragis arrives minoc

It was decided that our next step was to visit Vos. He had sent us to the Orc cave and told us that the mage, Tarian Lokweaver, would help us find Tolivar. It was strangely quiet at Yew Prison. Where were the guards. Surely they wouldn’t desert their posts, they knew how important Vos was. As the others looked for them, I went ahead to talk to Vos. By the King’s orders, he wanted to me to question Vos without the others present.

Arriving at the cells, I found Vos’s guard sitting against a wall, in only his underwear, his head bleeding. I had a bad feeling that Vos was up to something. His cell was empty! I hurried back to the guard and asked him if he knew who had hit him. He told me that a very pretty girl from the Abbey Inn, had brought him dinner. The food smelled so delicious. “I sat down at the table to eat and drink the wine she had brought. Next thing I know, I woke up naked and with a big knot on my head.”




I asked if he knew the girl’s name. He shook his head no, then grabbed it. As I was searching for clues the rest arrived. Since there was no sign of Vos or who helped him, it was decided to speak to, Terrick, the one guard they had found. While he hadn’t recognized her, he told us that she had been sent by the innkeeper. He Confirmed what the first guard had told us. When we told him of Vos’s escape, he became worried. “That can’t be, a guard was escorting her. He told me that he was going to thank the innkeeper and escort the girl back to keep her safe.” When asked he told us he had seen the girl at the inn a couple of times. He couldn’t remember her name, but remembered it was unusual.

infor on girl



We were greeted by the innkeeper, who told us that while there were few rooms, we could have them. I explained that we here not here for rooms, rather information. I told her about the prisoner’s escape and how the girl came from the inn. She thought for a monument and shaking her head, told me that she had not sent food to the Yew Prison. She did remember that a guard escorting a lovely lady had come into the inn. Turning to the others, we agreed that the guard had to been Vos. While we debated our next move, the innkeeper interrupted. She told us that the lady hadn’t left with the guard, but instead a man in a long hood. She added that she never did see the guard leave. When asked if the lady had golden hair, she shook her head saying no but she was very faired skin. When we asked to see the name she had used to rent the room, the innkeeper blushed. It seemed that she hadn’t given a name. I looked in surprise at her. Drawing herself up, she defended the lack of a name. They had paid in gold more than the room cost. The lady had joked with the guard saying while it was gold, it wasn’t like a treasure. Now that was important information. I asked if she knew which direction they had gone. She answered in a puzzled voice, “They went Out of the city, toward the North, but there is nothing North of here.” As we started to leave, the innkeeper remembered one piece of important information. The lady had a slight limp, her right leg. Also when she walked, trying to keep herself poised, like an important lady might.


innkeeper abby


Lord British’s Visit – The end

October 03, 2014 By: Tamais Category: Lake Austin News

Lake Austin Shard

King Blackthorn: Long live Ultima Online!

Heckles: Huzzah!

King Blackthorn: May it live forever!

Bennu: Long Live the Kings!

King Blackthorn: The one true virtual world!

King Blackthorn: Huzzah!

Bennu: Huzzah!

King Blackthorn: Huzzah!

King Blackthorn: Huzzah!

Rainz: Rainz never die!


King Blackthorn: Long live citizens of UO!


Heckles: HUZZAH!

King Blackthorn: UO the great!

Bennu: Huzzah!

Heckles: *plays with magic fireworks wand*

King Blackthorn: Britannia!


Heckles: HOORAY!

King Blackthorn: Huzzah!

Gotan the Guard: *salutes the future and our shared past*

Lord British: HAPPY 17TH!







King Blackthorn: The honor was all ours!

Lord British: LONG MAY HE RUL!

King Blackthorn: We will return!

Bennu: Long Live the Kings!

King Blackthorn: Goodbye!

Lord British: FARE WELL!


King Blackthorn: You are the greatest!



all together